Shonda Rhimes and Meredith Grey preached eternal wisdom when they coined the phrase: “She’s my person.”
This concept resonates with everyone, whether or not you have been lucky enough to find “your person.” When you are exploring a new city by way of gelato stands, cleaning up dog diarrhea at 3 AM, and doing mundane adulthood tasks (that no one told you about when you are a kid) – your life experiences feel somewhat incomplete without that person going through it all with you. Your person always makes life better. And hopefully, they feel the same way about you, too. If not, hello Glen Close in Fatal Attraction.
I met my person 11 years ago. I looked across the grassy knoll of the college quad and approached the guy who was manning the root beer kegs (yeah, you read that right). One crooked smile coupled with his self-deprecating slouch and I was done for. The sequela known as “cute guy at college becomes husband” is an enchanting fairytale, though not exactly a linear series of events. But, I digress. The important thing: I met the person who actualized the phrase, “my other half.” He thinks I’m all right.
So, blah-de-blah, enough with the romantics. If you wanted to read soft erotica, you’d be at the grocery store pretending to browse the magazine section. This is supposed to be a food blog. And, it is. But it is also a literary venue. So, in order to communicate the magnitude of today’s food message, I call upon the literary tools you dumped promptly after exiting your SATs: The analogy.
Hadley: her Husband
All food: _____
Remember that useful SAT tip for solving analogies: make a sentence joining the two words to figure out the answer.
Hadley’s person and one true love is her Husband.
All food’s person and one true love is…. CHEESE.
Voila. See? I knew you were a genius.
Cheese. Is there any other food that can be featured successfully and seamlessly with each course of the meal? I think not.
Bread? Is the Pope Catholic?
With fruit? With veggies? Over dinner? As dessert? With your port?
From a cow? From a goat? From a wheel? From a can? Grilled? String?
Yes. Cheese. A thousand times over cheese.
If I practiced idolatry, I would sacrifice hot baguettes and crush families of crackers before a tower of cheese. Magnificent as an individual and the magnificent food soul mate.
So, let’s close the circle with a twist you weren’t expecting. Remember, earlier how I said that hopefully when you find your “person,” the imprint is reciprocal? Yeah, that’s the goal. I recall the above analogy and some obscure algebra property to bring it home.
Hadley: her husband
All food: cheese
I know what you’re thinking: Ooo! Pick me! I know!
Husbands’s person and one true love is Hadley!
Right? It’s Hadley!
Alas, it is not. The answer, again, is cheese. CHEESE. Husband’s person is cheese.
They fall for it every time. (Remember from high school, when in doubt, always pick C. For cheese.)
While cheese hasn’t necessarily been the secret to our marital bliss, it may be the reason why Husband marched through four years of medical school and three years of residency like a dedicated band geek. He barely broke a sweat.
Like any wonderful husband, he credits me with his successes. I accept that credit on behalf of the real honoree: Mom’s macaroni & cheese. In his first year of medical school, I would make homemade mac & cheese for Husband the night before his big exams. Carbohydrate loading for the geek’s marathon, if you will. He always always earned high marks, so we attributed it to the “good luck mac & cheese” and a faithful tradition was born. (It should be mentioned that Husband tried to institute other “good luck traditions” for the nights before his exams, as well. Those were promptly dismissed. Boys.)
Thus far, every set academic and professional benchmark has been cleared using the bricks of hard work on his part, filled with a mortar of macaroni & cheese. So, Husband will now affectionately be referred to as: Cheese, MD.
P.S. I got you a present! You can now subscribe to your favorite foodie humor blog via e-mail. Adapted from Beyoncé: “On the left, on the left.”
Mom’s Mac & Cheese
2 C dry macaroni
1/2 C butter
(Please don’t dishonor cheese or my mother by using anything but butter sticks)
2 Tbsp flour
1 ½ C milk
(The fattier the better. When is that not ever true?)
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 ½ C white American cheese
(I buy a block of cheese from the deli, about 0.5 lbs. Some have objected to this choice of cheese. I reply, “Are you not an American?”)
8 x 8 baker’s dish (prepared with cooking spray)
- Oven to 350 F.
- Cook macaroni as directed.
- In a separate saucepan, melt down butter and then add in the flour. Stir until the flour is totally combined.
- Add milk to butter mixture slowly, stirring constantly.
- On medium high heat, continue stirring until liquid starts bubbling and becomes a white cream sauce. Should take about 5 minutes.
- Add salt & pepper. (I don’t measure. The only way I live dangerously.)
- Placed strained macaroni in baking dish. Pour sauce over the macaroni and use a spoon to distribute it evenly.
- Shred white American cheese block for 1 ½ C of shredded cheese. Sprinkle shredded cheese over macaroni.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until bubbling and delicious looking.
- My mother covers her dish with tin foil for the first 25 minutes, and removes the tin for the last 5 minutes of baking. She is a much more conscientious than I. It’s worth mentioning because it browns the mac & cheese nicely at the end.